The Grand Canyon is one of the most famous natural attractions in America. When you stand on the edge of the 446 km long canyon and look across the 29 km to the other side it is easy to see how this area has been inspiring artists and adventurers for centuries.
Seeing everything the area has offer could take a lifetime. This makes it hard to narrow down your must-see destinations if you only have a fleeting visit. iland co have put together this quick travel guide to help make those decisions a little easier.
One of the first things you will need to ask yourself is which rim you want to visit? Of course, time and budget will be the biggest deciding factor for this but here is some info on each rim to help.
The South Rim is probably known as THE place to visit. When you look out from one of the many viewpoints along this rim you will no doubt recognise the area from countless photographs, paintings and movies.
There is an entrance fee to enter the National Park. Check out prices here.
Access is super easy here with some great walks. There are plenty of well cared for roads if you have a car and you also have the option of using the free shuttle that runs between Grand Canyon Village and the gateway community of Tusayan. For timetable information head here.
The Grand Canyon Village is the most popular entrance into the park and parking can be a nightmare in peak season. It is busy for a spectacular reason, though. Yavapai Point is said to be one of the best places to view the canyon from. And if you can make it here for a sunrise you will not be disappointed. Just make sure you get out of bed extra early as there are plenty of other visitors who have the same idea.
Image by travelwithmeraki
Other things to consider doing while you at the South Rim are:
Bright Angel Hike. This hike will take you from the rim down 1335 meters to the Colorado River.
Rim Trail. For something a little less strenuous, this walk is mostly paved and follows the rim from near the Visitor Centre to Hermits Rest. You may just be walking along one of the most scenic paths in North America!
Image by travelwithmeraki
The North rim is more remote than the South, with much fewer visitors. If you want to get away from it all with some amazing hikes and camping then this may be the rim for you.
Like the South rim, you will need to pay to entry the park. Also, note that the North Rim is closed in the winter months.
The North Rim has fewer facilities than the South Rim and is much less developed. A must see destination here is Bright Angel Point. From here you can look out over the only water sources on the North Rim, Roaring Springs.
The West rim is operated by the Hualapai Tribe rather than the National Park Service. If you are travelling from Las Vegas this is the rim closest to you. Private vehicles are not allowed in the park but there is a free shuttle bus that travels to the various viewpoints.
One of the main attractions is The Grand Canyon Skywalk. This glass walkway is a horseshoe-shaped bridge suspended 1220 meters above the riverbed. This attraction can get very busy so make sure you book ahead. It is also important to note that no cameras or video equipment are allowed. You can purchase photographs on the site.
Image by Leonardo Stabile
Other attractions include:
Eagle Point Viewpoint where you can take a walking tour that shows replicas of various Native American Tribe dwellings and discover beautiful handmade, authentic jewellery.
Guano Point which boasts the most beautiful views of the West and Colorado River.
Various companies that offer helicopter and boat tours so you can experience the canyon from above the rim to the floor of the canyon.
The National Park Service does not state there is a Grand Canyon east. However, it is used to describe the area where you can visit a few popular sites such as Antelope Canyon and Rainbow Bridge.
One of the most scenic attractions is Horseshoe Bend. Although this is technically up the Colorado River before the Grand Canyon National Park starts it should still be on your radar.
Not just what to see but how to see it.
As well as locations there are many different ways to experience the Grand Canyon, from White Water Rafting, smooth-water boat trips, mule tours to experiencing it from the air by plane or helicopter. For more information on tours available check out this site.
We have only skimmed the surface of the attractions and sites to see at The Grand Canyon. Make sure you do plenty of research to find the perfect itinerary for you.
No matter what destination you choose we promise that standing on the edge of this awe-inspiring place that showcases 2 billion years of the Earths geological history will leave you speechless.
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Are you planning a trip to the Grand Canyon? Which Rim will you be visiting?
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